Talk of migrants and where to shelter them has suddenly become a huge concern for blue states, especially those who have praised themselves for having sanctuary cities. Everything was hunky-dory, and tales about a border crisis were exaggerations by MAGA Republicans. Until, that is, illegal immigrants started getting shipped to Democrat-run cities, Martha’s Vineyard, and Vice President Kamala Harris’ home. Now the question is where to house them? New York City Mayor Eric Adams thinks he might have a solution: Put them on cruise ships.
Luxury Housing for Migrants
During an interview on WCBS-TV’s The Point With Marcia Kramer, Adams said, “We’re examining everything, from the legality of using any type of cruise ship for temporary housing. We’re looking at everything to see how do we deal with this.”
“This” references the sudden and large influx of migrants from the southern border. The Big Apple’s mayor has been in a word war with Texas Gov. Greg Abbott since the Republican started busing migrants to the city. Officials claim that, since May, more than 11,000 people have been sent to NYC, many of them from the Lone Star State. The city’s shelter system is struggling to keep up with so many extra bodies, a population jumping by 10,000 since mid-May, according to The New York Times. This is a 22% increase, with a spike of 1,500 during just one week in September.
But is such extravagant shelter really the answer? New York seems to think so. Last month, Liberty Nation reported that migrants were going to be housed in the 28-story luxury Row NYC hotel located in the middle of Times Square, one of the nation’s hottest tourist destinations.
Using cruise ships to accommodate people isn’t a new concept, Adams pointed out, referring to former Mayor Mike Bloomberg’s idea back in 2002 to provide housing for the homeless. “If you think about a cruise ship, it’s exactly what you need,” Bloomberg said at the time. “Rooms with bathrooms that are safe, that we can afford, in a neighborhood we can use.”
The city’s “right to shelter” law guarantees housing for anyone who requests help. Adams said he doesn’t want to ignore that mandate, but meeting the growing need is becoming very challenging. However, just as Bloomberg’s cruise ship suggestion caught heavy criticism 20 years ago, the current mayor also is hearing a negative response.
Deborah Diamant, director of legal affairs for the Coalition for the Homeless, said the idea was insulting. She claimed it would create difficulties in regards to providing transportation, food, and access to schools for those aboard the cruise ships. Diamant went further, accusing Adams of trying to hide the homeless and the migrant crisis:
“He’s been pushing people to the margins, and he’s been pushing people out of sight. We’re pushing them so far here on to cruise ships – off the land and onto the water.”
Adams vs Abbott
LN Socio-political Correspondent Jeff Charles observed, “The ongoing saga between Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and the mayors of the blue cities to which he is sending busloads of illegal immigrants has been one of the more entertaining stories in politics.” Angered over the migrants being sent to his city, Adams is now threatening to sue Abbott, heightening the drama.
The mayor believes the “Abbott Express” is illegal and wants to make the Texas governor pay for the supposed crime. However, a spokesperson for Abbott said Adams is “flat-out lying and selectively attacking Texas’ busing operation, while conveniently ignoring migrants bused into New York City by Democrat-led El Paso and flown by President Biden.”
Despite graciously accepting the undocumented by the busload from El Paso – in a deal with Democrat Mayor Oscar Leeser – Adams declared Abbott’s operation illegal, claiming migrants are being put on buses involuntarily. The governor’s press secretary, Renae Eze, disagreed, saying “migrants on Texas’ buses willingly choose to go to New York, having signed a voluntary consent waiver available in multiple languages upon boarding that they agreed on the destination.” She added that the buses are stocked with water and food, and migrants “are allowed to purchase any needed provisions or disembark at any of these stops [along the way], as they have been processed and released by the federal government.”
Meanwhile, as this battle of wills unfolds, thousands of migrants are still crossing into the United States. They are crowding border towns and cities, draining resources, and overwhelming border patrol agents. Is putting illegal immigrants in upscale, luxury, and entertainment vessels really the answer, or will this only encourage more to enter the country?